14 August 2011

The Scorn of the Healthy

It happened today. In a forum that I frequent, someone reported that they had great difficulty registering at the site because the captcha image was particularly hard, and the form would reset if you got it wrong. The person concluded by saying the visually disabled would find it much more problematic.

The first response, which was from a fellow poster on the site and not site admin: "I didn't find it difficult." The OP (original poster) said "That's like telling someone in a wheelchair that because you don't find the steps difficult, they shouldn't."

That brought the recriminations on in earnest. People demanded that the OP describe their "disability" (sneer quotes included). They pointed out that if he/she could make long posts, they shouldn't have had difficulty with the registration form. I posted to say it was really nobody's business what the OP's state of health was, and was shouted down. "They made it our business. This is a vital piece of information."

I would be remiss if I didn't point out that a few people, in addition to me, did speak up in the OP's defense, and that none of the people who were being rude were affiliated with the forum's administration. The admin person was perfectly respectful and posted to say that he was somewhat limited by the forum software but that he would look into it.

It's still so discouraging though.

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